Greg Schiano on why he returned to Rutgers football: ‘The reality is we came back to be national champions’

Now in his fourth year back at Rutgers, Greg Schiano has some unfinished business. The goal, Schiano says, isn’t for Rutgers to be competitive in the Big Ten and simply make bowl games.

He wants to finish the job from his previous tenure with the Scarlet Knights. Schiano said he has the goal of turning Rutgers football into the top program in the nation.

Not just in the Big Ten, but in the nation.

The return of Schiano has brought a sense of stability to Rutgers at a time when college football is as turbulent as ever. The fact that in his previous stint, Rutgers finished 2006 ranked and had a strong run of bowl game success.

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Schiano has now twice inherited a Rutgers program that would be considered the worst in Power Five football. He implemented a system and practices his last go-around that were scrapped after he left in 2012 for a job in the NFL.

“So I thought we had really established some practices that were in place to do with football but had to do with things like the way that players were fed or the way that players were cared for from a medical standpoint,” Schiano said on ‘Next Up’ with host Adam Breneman.

“And a lot of those things that are eroded or changed maybe (the previous staff) just didn’t like the way we did it. But I’m convinced the way we were doing it, and we tweaked it some. But getting back here was a surprise I thought that those things would be in place. But you know what, you just go back to work and you redo it.”

Schiano left following the 2011 season to become head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.  In his final seven years at Rutgers before he left, Rutgers made six bowl games.


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They won five of those bowl games.

Prior to his arrival, Rutgers hadn’t been to a bowl game since 2014, their first season in the Big Ten.

“You know this is a rebuild. No doubt we built it once. As high as seventh in the country. Our goal was to be number one, and we didn’t get to number one,” Schiano said.

“So our goal is to be number one – and I didn’t come back to go to bowl games and that’s going to be nice, and that’s a step along the way. But the reality is we came back to be national champions and to do that, you have to be Big Ten champions and then eventually other steps along the way, but I love it. It’s a great place to be.”



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Story originally appeared on Rutgers Wire